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Athletic Bilbao striker Aritz Aduriz has announced his retirement from professional football at the age of 39.

‘’The time has come. Many times, I have said that football will leave you before you leave it. Yesterday, the doctors told me to go see the surgeon, sooner rather than later, to get a prosthetic to replace my hip and to try and go about my everyday life, as normally as possible. Unfortunately, my body has said ‘enough’.

“I can’t help my teammates the way I would like to, nor the way they deserve. That is the life of a professional athlete. Simple. Very simple,” read part of his post.

His first spell with Bilbao as a youngster saw him mostly confined to the reserve team and loaned out to Burgos in the third tier.

Aduriz scored 141 goals in 296 appearances for Bilbao. He also played for Mallorca and Valencia.

He also played 13 times for the Spain national team, becoming the country’s oldest goalscorer in 2016, aged 35.

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